Childhood Trauma and Prevalence of Cardiovascular Disease in Patients With Type 1 Diabetes

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To examine the relationship between childhood trauma and prevalence of cardiovascular disease (CVD) (either coronary disease or stroke) in Type 1diabetes (DM).


From an original cohort of 725 African Americana with Type 1 DM, 444 (61.2%) were reexamined as part of a 6-year follow-up. In both examinations, patients underwent a structured clinical interview to determine their medical history and a detailed ocular examination. At follow-up, patients completed the Childhood Trauma Questionnaire, Hostility and Direction of Hostility Questionnaire, and Beck Depression Inventory. Diabetic patients who had CVD and those had not developed CVD at the 6-year follow-up were compared for their experience of childhood trauma at the same time controlling for the presence of known risk factors for CVD.


Of the 393 patients at risk, 60 (15.3%) had developed any CVD, 52 (12.9%) had coronary disease, and 16 (3.8%) had a stroke at the 6-year follow-up. On univariate analysis, childhood trauma was significantly associated with 6-year incidence of any CVD (p < .01), coronary disease (p < .05), and stroke (p < .01). Childhood trauma scores were also significantly associated with depression (p < .001) and hostility (p < .001) scores, age (p < .05), and renal disease (p < .05). In primary multivariate analyses, childhood trauma predicted CVD independent of age, body mass index, blood pressure, and proteinuria. Secondary analyses suggested that association between the 6-year incidence of CVD and childhood trauma was also independent of depression ratings.


Childhood seems to be an independent risk factor for the incidence of CVD in Type 1 DM.

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